You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Treasure’ found

Disney taps Turteltaub for summer '00 pic

“Phenomenon” helmer Jon Turteltaub will direct and produce the big-ticket pic “National Treasure” for Disney, slated to open for the Independence Day weekend in 2000.

Pic, which will be budgeted in the $60 million to $90 million range, is about a modern-day treasure hunt for a Revolutionary War secret stash of cash hidden by Jefferson, Washington and Franklin to help finance the war.

Mouse execs are looking to it as a tentpole summer release for next year. Disney is setting up the project with tie-ins to a number of merchandisers and companies, including McDonald’s.

The bigger budget is something of a departure for the Mouse House, which in the past year has cut back on the number of high-priced projects it produces. Disney chairman Joe Roth, however, has maintained that Disney still has a strong interest in event pics.

Disney wants to get it into production by June or July. Buena Vista Motion Pictures president David Vogel and senior VP of production Todd Garner are the execs handling the pic.

Turteltaub is producing with his partner Christina Steinberg as well as Hunt Lowry.

Jim Kauf (“Rush Hour,” “Stakeout”) is penning the script. No casting has been set.

“It’s got its share of special effects,” Turteltaub said. “It’s really a big action adventure comedy. But for me, I still think of it as a character piece.”

Oren Aviv, head of creative advertising at Disney, and Charles Segars, an exec at DreamWorks TV, came up with the idea two years ago and developed it with Turteltaub. Aviv and Segars will exec produce.

Turteltaub’s other credits include “Rocket Man,” “While You Were Sleeping,” “Cool Runnings” and “3 Ninjas.”

Turteltaub’s deal was brokered by Endeavor. ICM’s Jim Wiatt repped Kauf.

More Film

  • Robert Smith, Longtime Executive at DuArt

    Robert Smith, Longtime Executive at New York's DuArt Film Labs, Dies at 88

    Robert Smith, a longtime executive with New York’s DuArt Film Labs, died Jan. 11 in Montvale, N.J. He was 88. Smith spent some 62 years with DuArt, the film processing and post-production facility founded in 1922 in the penthouse of an automobile garage in Midtown. Smith rose to president of DuArt before retiring in 2015. [...]

  • Bird Box

    Los Angeles On-Location Feature Filming Surges 12.2% in 2018

    On-location feature filming in Greater Los Angeles expanded impressively in 2018, gaining 12.2% to 4,377 shooting days, according to FilmL.A. Production activity for feature films rose 15.5% to 1,078 shooting days during the fourth quarter, with 146 days coming from projects receiving California tax credits — including Netflix’s “Bird Box,” Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a [...]

  • 'Ghostbusters': First Look at Jason Reitman's

    Watch the First Teaser for Jason Reitman's 'Ghostbusters' Sequel

    If there’s something strange in your neighborhood, it’s time to watch a teaser for Jason Reitman’s “Ghostbusters” forthcoming film. Sony Pictures released a first look at the upcoming movie, a sequel to the 1984 classic. The footage shows a glimpse of the memorable station wagon Ecto-1. The studio announced on Tuesday that the wheels are [...]

  • Anne Hathaway

    Anne Hathaway to Star in Robert Zemeckis' 'The Witches' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Anne Hathaway has closed a deal to star as the Grand High Witch in Robert Zemeckis and Warner Bros.’ “The Witches” adaptation. Variety first reported that Hathaway was holding the offer for both that and “Sesame Street,” and at the time, scheduling for both films were holding up dealmaking. With those issues settled, Hathaway is [...]

  • Film Ratings Overhauled in the U.K.,

    Film Ratings Overhauled in the U.K. With Tougher Restrictions on Sexual Content

    The body that oversees film ratings in the U.K. is tightening its age restrictions and giving movies with certain types of sexual content older age ratings. The British Board of Film Classification said the changes were in response to public demand after a consultation that took in the views of over 10,000 people in the [...]

  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame

    'Hunchback of Notre Dame' Live-Action Reboot in the Works at Disney

    Disney is in early development on a live-action “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” movie, based on Disney’s animated film and Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel “Notre-Dame de Paris.” Playwright David Henry Hwang is attached to write the script, with Mandeville Films and Josh Gad set to produce. Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz will pen the music. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content